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Expectations for the confirmation of Proxima c from a long-term radial velocity follow-up

Status Report From: arXiv.org e-Print archive
Posted: Tuesday, March 24, 2020

Mario Damasso, Fabio Del Sordo

(Submitted on 20 Mar 2020)

Proxima c, a candidate second planet orbiting Proxima Centauri, was detected with the radial velocity method. The announced long orbital period (5.21+0.26−0.22 years), and small semi-amplitude of the induced Doppler signal (1.2±0.4 m/s), make this detection challenging and the target worthy of a follow-up in the next years. We intend to evaluate the impact of future data on the statistical significance of the detection through realistic simulated radial velocities to be added to the published dataset, spanning up to one orbital period of Proxima c in the time range 2019-2023. We find that the detection significance of Proxima c increases depending not only on the amount of data collected, but also on the number of instruments used, and especially on the timespan covered by the observational campaign. However, on average we do not get strong statistical evidence and we predict that, in the best-case scenario, in the next 5 years the detection of Proxima c can become significant at 4σ level. If instead Proxima c does not exist, the detected signal may lower its significance down to 2σ.

Comments: Accepted for publication in MNRAS, 2020

Subjects: Earth and Planetary Astrophysics (astro-ph.EP); Instrumentation and Methods for Astrophysics (astro-ph.IM)

Cite as: arXiv:2003.09305 [astro-ph.EP] (or arXiv:2003.09305v1 [astro-ph.EP] for this version)

Submission history

From: Fabio Del Sordo 

[v1] Fri, 20 Mar 2020 14:51:37 UTC (3,607 KB)

https://arxiv.org/abs/2003.09305

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